This story has been updated
Six months after opening its mobile doors, Vietnamese food truck Muoi Tieu announced that it will open a brick-and-mortar location this fall in the former space of Mark’s Kitchen in Takoma Park.
According to an Instagram post by Main Street Takoma on Wednesday, Muoi Tieu will be moving into the brick-and-mortar location as a bistro and market concept. The space will be undergoing renovation over the coming months.
Muoi Tieu, which means salt and pepper in Vietnamese, was started by Thuy-Tu Tran, 38, in January. She said she originally wanted to open a brick-and-mortar location but there wasn’t anything available at the time.
“When this came up, I was like ‘well, I have to be open to it,’” she said.
The permanent location would serve as a market bistro with the market starting with breakfast and snacks, Tran said. The bistro won’t be like a full-service restaurant as patrons will be able to order food at the counter and grab their own table.
Tran said many people have asked if she will serve Pho, a popular Vietnamese soup. While it won’t be a regular item, Tran said Pho might be served on occasion.
Tran said she approached the owner of Mark’s Kitchen, Mark Choe, in February to buy the establishment and, after some discussion of her food truck business, he seemed to be on board.
“It’s very clear that he wanted it to go to somebody that would kind of embody that family, community feel or spirit that he had built over the years,” she said. “He saw all my family involved, all the fresh Asian food we were offering…he was like ‘oh you’ll do well here.’”
Mark’s Kitchen closed earlier this year after over three decades in Takoma Park. The eatery offered a mix of American and Asian cuisine, while serving breakfast, lunch and dinner options.
Muoi Tieu food truck offers meat/seafood and vegan/vegetarian options of Vietnamese staples including rice paper rolls, goi (Vietnamese salads) and banh mi. The food truck will still be part of the business, but limited to just events as Tran and her staff get the physical location running smoothly.
Tran, who said she’s been an avid home cook since she was in her 20s, said her biggest goal is to serve food that provides happiness but also comfort.
“I’m feeling really excited,” she said. “The overwhelming feeling is just really happy and proud that the concept, the thing that I created, is doing so well.”
Ahead of the opening of the new restaurant, the food truck can be found from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday through Friday at the Takoma Park Silver Spring Co-op parking lot, at 201 Ethan Allen Ave.